Bullying: the mental health effects

Doctors To Youhealth, highlight1, Wellness

With house calls, we're generally called to address your physical ailments, but sometimes emotional and psychological issues can accompany these concerns. Take bullying, for example. We know that this is an unusual topic for a concierge medical service talk about but it’s become such an increasing issue that we wanted to at least start the conversation here.

We typically think of kids and schools when the thought of being bullied comes to mind, but this type of abuse can happen at any age and it can happen anywhere. In fact, it’s become common place for grown people to verbally express their feelings about another’s race, religion, language, etc. in an effort to make life miserable for the other person by exerting the appearance of power.

Our more recent attention to mental health and sexual harassment, especially in the workplace, has caused us to pay attention to the effects of bullying more so than we’ve done in the past, and now we’re starting to do more to combat it for the health of everyone involved.

The goal is not only to address bullying by taking note of the warning signs and helping victims who are being bullied, but also to prevent if from ever happening at all.




With house calls, we're generally called to address your physical ailments, but sometimes emotional and psychological issues can accompany these concerns. Take bullying, for example. We know that this is an unusual topic for a concierge medical service talk about but it’s become such an increasing issue that we wanted to at least start the conversation here.

We typically think of kids and schools when the thought of being bullied comes to mind, but this type of abuse can happen at any age and it can happen anywhere. In fact, it’s become common place for grown people to verbally express their feelings about another’s race, religion, language, etc. in an effort to make life miserable for the other person by exerting the appearance of power.

Our more recent attention to mental health and sexual harassment, especially in the workplace, has caused us to pay attention to the effects of bullying more so than we’ve done in the past, and now we’re starting to do more to combat it for the health of everyone involved.

The goal is not only to address bullying by taking note of the warning signs and helping victims who are being bullied, but also to prevent if from ever happening at all.




What is bullying?

“Bullying is unwanted, aggressive behavior among school aged children that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time,” says stopbullying.org.

Bullying can happen anywhere and in many ways, including verbally, or even online. Cyberbullying can be just as painful as that in real life.

Outside of physical abuse, bullying consists of any constant act done in order to make a person feel intimidated and/or embarrassed. So this means it can happen to you as an adult at work.

Verbal bullying is, according to Brim, “when an individual uses verbal language (e.g., insults, teasing, etc) to gain power over his or her peers.”

Physical bullying is usually what comes to mind when we hear the word, which is to cause bodily harm to someone in order to exert power over them.

Social bullying is the act of sabotaging a person’s reputation among peers.


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Bullying and your health

Bullying impacts us on three levels: the person being bullied, the abuser themselves, and the bystanders.

People who are being bullied experience depression and anxiety, which can have an effect on their daily function, diet, sleep, and will likely--without some form of therapy--have a lasting effect on the person into adulthood (if they’re a kid).

“An adult bully can be an intimidating boss or colleague, a controlling romantic partner, an unruly neighbor, a high pressure sales/business representative, a condescending family member, a shaming social acquaintance, or other types of abusive relationships.” --Psychology Today

It affects the bully themselves. The idea of being able to impose will on someone can give a bully the idea that they can always take advantage of people and situations. This type of behavior almost always leads to other forms of violence and crime.

And it affects those who may witness it. Similarly to the person being bullied, a friend or witness to this will likely have the same feelings of anxiety with the thought that they’ll be next. This can alter their daily behavior as well, and result in lasting psychological changes.

“There is a strong link between bullying and suicide, as suggested by recent bullying-related suicides in the US and other countries… Bully victims are between 2 to 9 times more likely to consider suicide than non-victims,” according to bullyingstatistics.com.

What is bullying?

“Bullying is unwanted, aggressive behavior among school aged children that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time,” says stopbullying.org.

Bullying can happen anywhere and in many ways, including verbally, or even online. Cyberbullying can be just as painful as that in real life.

Outside of physical abuse, bullying consists of any constant act done in order to make a person feel intimidated and/or embarrassed. So this means it can happen to you as an adult at work.

Verbal bullying is, according to Brim, “when an individual uses verbal language (e.g., insults, teasing, etc) to gain power over his or her peers.”

Physical bullying is usually what comes to mind when we hear the word, which is to cause bodily harm to someone in order to exert power over them.

Social bullying is the act of sabotaging a person’s reputation among peers.


Image

Bullying and your health

Bullying impacts us on three levels: the person being bullied, the abuser themselves, and the bystanders.

People who are being bullied experience depression and anxiety, which can have an effect on their daily function, diet, sleep, and will likely--without some form of therapy--have a lasting effect on the person into adulthood (if they’re a kid).

“An adult bully can be an intimidating boss or colleague, a controlling romantic partner, an unruly neighbor, a high pressure sales/business representative, a condescending family member, a shaming social acquaintance, or other types of abusive relationships.” --Psychology Today

It affects the bully themselves. The idea of being able to impose will on someone can give a bully the idea that they can always take advantage of people and situations. This type of behavior almost always leads to other forms of violence and crime.

And it affects those who may witness it. Similarly to the person being bullied, a friend or witness to this will likely have the same feelings of anxiety with the thought that they’ll be next. This can alter their daily behavior as well, and result in lasting psychological changes.

“There is a strong link between bullying and suicide, as suggested by recent bullying-related suicides in the US and other countries… Bully victims are between 2 to 9 times more likely to consider suicide than non-victims,” according to bullyingstatistics.com.






Putting a stop to bullying

You may initially think that bullying is a concern that’s only meant for those actually going through it, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. This is something that is affecting us all on some level or another.

Again, this is not something that only school children experience; social and verbal bullying in particular are common experiences of adults. The goal, however, is to prevent it from happening in the first place.

If you have a child in school, there are a number of programs and tactics that BRIM suggests to help prevent bullying or handle it if it’s already taking place. This includes knowing what to look for and method on how to report it when you see it, which is especially useful for bystanders.

In any case, communication is key. Bullying is a serious situation for all involved, and even for those who don’t feel as if they’re involved. Speaking up can prevent it or help handle it if it’s already taking place, and in cases where afterward, talking--whether to a friend, family member, or therapist--can help prevent long-term mental effects.



Putting a stop to bullying

You may initially think that bullying is a concern that’s only meant for those actually going through it, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. This is something that is affecting us all on some level or another.

Again, this is not something that only school children experience; social and verbal bullying in particular are common experiences of adults. The goal, however, is to prevent it from happening in the first place.

If you have a child in school, there are a number of programs and tactics that BRIM suggests to help prevent bullying or handle it if it’s already taking place. This includes knowing what to look for and method on how to report it when you see it, which is especially useful for bystanders.

In any case, communication is key. Bullying is a serious situation for all involved, and even for those who don’t feel as if they’re involved. Speaking up can prevent it or help handle it if it’s already taking place, and in cases where afterward, talking--whether to a friend, family member, or therapist--can help prevent long-term mental effects.